Links 5/7/2020 | naked capitalism

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Camera Traps May Overcount Snow Leopards and Other Vulnerable Species Scientific American

Ants store long- and short-term memories on different sides of their brains Science

Layoffs Start Turning From Temporary to Permanent Across America Bloomberg

Why North Dakota Has the Best Internet in the United States Vice

Millions predicted to develop tuberculosis as result of Covid-19 lockdown Guardian


The science:

Fauci: No scientific evidence the coronavirus was made in a Chinese lab National Geographic

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Was Sundance a “First Petri Dish” of Coronavirus in the States? Hollywood Reporter. Well worth a read. Plus this disease is very bad.

Coronavirus may have jumped to humans as early as October, study says South Chine Morning Post

The head of Sweden’s no-lockdown coronavirus plan said the country’s heavy death toll ‘came as a surprise’ Business Insider

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Kicker is the last sentence:


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Treatment and Vaccine:

Will Gilead price its coronavirus drug for public good or company profit? Reuters. Are we still going on a Gilead press release, or did I miss something?

Gilead Lobbying Rose As Interest In COVID-19 Treatment Climbed NPR. Handy chart:

Gilead Covid-19 Drug May Exceed $2 Billion Sales, Piper Says Bloomberg

VERIFY: What is remdesivir? WUSA9. Sober overview from a local D.C. station.

Gilead, working on its own remdesivir ramp-up, scouts licensing partners for global production Fierce Pharma

Japan to approve remdesivir and Avigan as coronavirus treatment NHK

Preliminary evidence from a multicenter prospective observational study of the safety and efficacy of chloroquine for the treatment of COVID-19 (preprint) medRxiv. 27 (!) authors, 6 contributing, others corresponding, from Guangdong Provice, China. From the abstract: “A total of 197 patients completed chloroquine treatment, and 176 patients were included as historical controls. The median time to achieve an undetectable viral RNA was shorter in chloroquine than in non-chloroquine (absolute difference in medians -6.0 days; 95% CI -6.0 to -4.0). The duration of fever is shorter in chloroquine (geometric mean ratio 0.6; 95% CI 0.5 to 0.8). No serious adverse events were observed in the chloroquine group. Patients treated with half dose experienced lower rate of adverse events than with full dose. … [R]andomised trials are needed for further evaluation.”

SARS-CoV-2 – Specific antiviral Treatment (preliminary document) National Center for New Infections (Switzerland). Note “Proposed therapeutic approach” (HQ “possible but uncertain” benefit, use would be off-label).

* * *

‘We’re disease vectors’: Senators press for rapid coronavirus testing for lawmakers WaPo

Why You Can’t Always Trust Your Coronavirus Antibody Test Results Pro Publica

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Materiel shortages:

Opening Up New Supply Chains NEJM

“Like a Bully at the Lunchroom”: How the Federal Government Took Control of the PPE Pipeline Vanity Fair

Doctors lambaste federal process for distributing Covid-19 drug remdesivir STAT News. Looks like Gilead has adopted Hermès’ strategy for marketing Birkin bags.

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Social distancing and compliance:

Functional fear predicts public health compliance in the COVID-19 pandemic (preprint) PsyArXiv. “Consistently, the only predictor of positive behavior change (e.g., social distancing, improved hand hygiene) was fear of COVID-19, with no effect of politically-relevant variables.”

The Effect of Stay-at-Home Orders on COVID-19 Infections in the United States (preprint) From the abstract: “The results here suggest that a coordinated nationwide stay-at-home order may have reduced by hundreds of thousands the current number of infections and by tens of thousands the total number of deaths from COVID-19. Future efforts in the United States and elsewhere to control pandemics should coordinate stay-at-home orders at the national level, especially for diseases for which local spread has already occurred and testing availability is delayed.”

The Public Is Astonishingly United The Atlantic. “A poll from The Washington Post and the University of Maryland released yesterday finds that eight in 10 Americans oppose reopening movie theaters and gyms; three-quarters don’t support letting sit-down restaurants and nail salons reopen; and a third or less would allow barber shops, gun stores, and retail stores to operate. An NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist poll last week found similar numbers.”

2 Utah County businesses told staff to ignore COVID-19 guidelines, resulting in 68 positive cases Daily Herald. “The right to infect others shall not be infringed.”

That’s one way to get the economy growing! Diners sit in individual GREENHOUSES to ensure social distancing at Dutch restaurant Daily Mail (Re Silc).




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Economic effects:

Don’t Blame Me for Unprecedented Use of This Word Bloomberg

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Finance response:

Banks’ dividends in Covid-19 times Bank of International Settlements. “Most authorities have undertaken initiatives in relation to banks’ distribution policies in the Covid-19 pandemic environment. However, practices across jurisdictions diverge markedly as regards scope and stringency.”

Crunch time for US tenants and landlords FT

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Corporate response:

Frontier will charge up to $89 for social distancing on flights Ars Technica (Re Silc). Presumably they’ll sell masks, too? Used, half-price?

NYT ‘hastens’ transformation of ads biz as it braces for a 55% plunge in ad sales The Drum. I guess they’d better gin up a new *Gate.

Zoom taps former Trump national security adviser H.R. McMaster for board Politico. Does anybody know how to say “revolving door” in Mandarin?

* * *
Political response:

Trump calls Americans ‘warriors’ in fight to open the economy Los Angeles Times. Conscripts can be warriors, I suppose.

Lobbyists Request Bailout for Corporate Lobbyists The Intercept

Why the Small-Business Bailout Went to the Big Guys Neil Barofsky, Bloomberg

The Bare Necessities: Federal Court Rules That Strip Clubs Are Entitled To Pandemic Loans Jonathan Turley

House Democrats unveil legislation to forgive student loans for health care workers The Hill. Liberals sorting out the worthy and the unworthy again.

“Political Connections and Cronyism”: In Blistering Whistleblower Complaint, Rick Bright Blasts Team Trump’s Pandemic Response Vanity Fair

Bright Wanted US To Purchase Of All Available Remdesivir Stock Early In Coronavirus Outbreak Pink Sheet

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Exit strategy:

Pandemic ‘Weather Service’ Key Before Next Outbreak, House Told (1) Bloomberg


Coronavirus: China has been preparing for this economic crisis since 2010, papers reveal The Independent

China’s mixed data point to challenge of rebooting economy and US looks to step up economic action against China FT

Photo Pulitzer:


China calls Hong Kong protesters a ‘political virus’ Guardian


Gujarat: Uttar Pradesh migrant cycling back home dies of fatigue near Karjan Times of India

The Koreas

Korean baseball thread. Find your favorite team!



UK finds itself almost alone with centralized virus contact-tracing app that probably won’t work well, asks for your location, may be illegal The Register

French farmers sound alarm in cheese market meltdown Politico. Another glut.

New Cold War

The Coronavirus Test for Russia The American Interest

International Institutions and the Challenge of the First Pandemic War Valdai Discussion Club


Michael Flynn Did Not Lie, He Was Framed by The FBI Sic Semper Tyrannis

Obama Says G.O.P.’s Biden Inquiry Promotes ‘Russian Disinformation’ NYT

The Macutazo: Timeline of an Absurd Military Adventure Caracas Chronicles. Very funny, well worth a read. A good break from #COVID19!

Captured American Mercenary Appears to Be Really Into Qanon Vice

Biden Sides With Trump, Bolton, and Pompeo in Backing Coup Effort in Venezuela Common Dreams

Trump Transition

Top Republican fundraiser and Trump ally named postmaster general, giving president new influence over Postal Service WaPo

Exclusive: Trump administration drafting ‘Artemis Accords’ pact for moon mining – sources Reuters


Democracy Wins in New York—and Bernie’s Back on the Ballot! Zephyr Teachout, The Nation


Customers shot 2 McDonald’s employees after being told to leave due to coronavirus restrictions CNN

Armed citizens escort lawmaker into Michigan State Capitol Lansing City Pulse

Our Famously Free Press

Why the media in UK and US has moved beyond manufacturing consent, and why that has led to a war about reporting COVID-19 Mainly Macro

Imperial Collapse Watch

Coronavirus survivors banned from joining the military Military Times (Rev Kev).

Princess Cruises offers Navy tips on Coronavirus Duffel Blog

How to stop a climate vote? Threaten a ‘no social distancing’ protest Los Angeles Times

Class Warfare

‘We Are Not Essential. We Are Sacrificial.’ NYT. From an MTA conductor.

Giant Hospital Corporation Takes Advantage of Coronavirus to Fight Nurses’ Union Drive The Intercept

72 UFWC Members Dead – After Strike, 12 S.C. Chicken Workers Fired – NOLA Garbage Workers Strike Payday Report

‘Stop throwing us bare bones’: US union activism surges amid coronavirus Guardian

Mass Incarceration Poses Uniquely American Coronavirus Risk The Intercept

The Left Case against Open Borders Angela Nagle, American Affairs. Re-upping this controversial, unwoke article from 2018, because it seems the open borders crowd has gone silent in the face of a global pandemic.

When Cotton Mather Fought The Smallpox American Heritage (Re Silc). Mather’s house was bombed (!).

Antidote du jour (via):

Bonus antidote:


I don’t think much of zoos, but I wish I were as happy as that bear!

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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